arts & culture

Zakifo Music Festival at a glance

Assuming you only stop for fuel, Durban is about a six-hour drive from Johannesburg. We got an early start on Monday morning, as we set off for Zakifo Festival. As a festival first-timer, I was a little underwhelmed by the size of the festival grounds and facilities. The stages were set up next to each other and acts ran back to back without the vacuous “are you ready?” and “thanks to our sponsors” emcee refrains you often have to tolerate at festivals. But when I missed Jojo Abot, whose set was feloniously swapped with Sax Machine’s, I missed having someone announce…
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Zakifo Music Festival at a glance

There are no trophies at the end of festivals

The Igoda festival network – which includes Zakifo in Durban, the Bassline Africa Day Concert in Johannesburg, Bushfire in Swaziland and Azgo festival in Maputo, Mozambique – is a partnership that’s making it simpler for festival directors to book big acts and share the costs and logistics. What it’s also done is caused wreaked havoc on the calendars, budgets and leave days of festival-lovers in the southern African region and beyond. Just this weekend, 26 to 28 May, Zakifo, Bushfire and Bassline will stage their festivals, each of them promising strong musical line-ups and great vibes.

When Damian Marley was…
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There are no trophies at the end of festivals

Bushfire – hotter than ever

Don’t make my mistake and let it take you 10 years to get to the MTN Bushfire Festival. If last year’s festival was anything to go by, the 11th edition (26-28th May) in Ezulwini Valley will be lit!

Swaziland may be small, but the BBC named its larger-than-life annual music festival the best in Africa. It’s a truly global event in terms of the performers and audience, and I danced – craft beer in hand – among 16 000 or so visitors from 58 countries. Whether you think you can dance or not, you’ll be tapping your feet, swaying or…
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Bushfire – hotter than ever

Fascinating facts about 5 African sites and monuments

Fascinating facts about 5 African sites and monuments

If you’re the kind of traveller who’s interested in the history of the place you’re visiting and the story of its people, you’ll be pleased to learn a few lesser-known facts about these monuments and places of interest on the continent.

Kwame Nkrumah Mausoleum and Memorial Park, Ghana

In this park in Accra there is a mango tree that was planted by former president Nelson Mandela on his visit there in 1991. The tree is one of many planted by various dignitaries from around the world in honour of Kwame Nkrumah, who was the…
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Fascinating facts about 5 African sites and monuments

African Art to be documented in 54-volume encyclopedia

Nana Oforiatta-Ayim, a writer, historian and filmmaker from Ghana, has set about cataloguing the art history of the African continent. The Cultural Encyclopedia project will culminate in a 54-volume encyclopedia that documents African historical and contemporary arts and culture, with a volume for each country.

The launch of the first encyclopedia took place in Oforiatta-Ayim’s home country at ANO gallery in the form of an open-source internet platform, also available in published volumes, and coincided with the 60th anniversary of Ghana’s independence.

The project received funding to the value of $40 000 from the Los Angeles County Museum of Art and, according The New…
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African Art to be documented in 54-volume encyclopedia

5 Top Music Festivals in Southern Africa

Africa is known as a cultural melting pot, so it’s no wonder its music is world renowned. Iconic artists call the continent home, and so do some of the best music festival, drawing music enthusiasts from afar each year. Here are some of the top five music festivals in Southern Africa.

Cape Town Jazz Festival, South Africa

In need of little introduction, the Cape Town Jazz Festival has throughout the years grown to become a the mecca of jazz festivals on the continent. Dubbed “Africa’s Grandest Gathering,” the festival which takes place in the Mother City boasts a formidable line up…
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5 Top Music Festivals in Southern Africa